Is It Hip to be Foursquare?

by Joe B on May 11, 2010

Foursquare counted its 40 millionth check-in recently, and it now has over 1 million users. Is it time to get on board? Could be, however, Facebook has announced that it will be adding location based features this month. That could really put a chink in the metal of Foursquare. What we do see, though, is that location based social media is up and coming and could be very useful to small businesses.

Because Facebook has not yet added its location based feature, let’s take a look at Foursquare and how it can help your business. First of all, what is Foursquare?

foursquare is a cross between a friend-finder, a social city-guide and a game that rewards you for doing interesting things. We aim to build things to not only help you keep up with the places your friends go, but that encourage you to discover new places and challenge you to explore your neighborhood in new ways.

So how can your business use Foursquare?

Reward Loyalty
Foursquare allows visitors to your business to “check-in.” The person who has checked in the most times is the “mayor.” Offer the mayor of your business something extra. For example, a free cup of coffee or a free appetizer if you are a restaurant or some other incentive or discount. Offering an incentive gives your customers a reason to “knock-off” the current mayor to become the mayor themselves.

You could also offer an incentive for customers who have checked in a certain number of times. Even if they aren’t the mayor, you can still reward your other customers.

Get New Business
Offer something to 1st time check-ins. People who are visiting or are new to your area will appreciate an incentive to visit your business.

Offer Tips
Offer Foursquare users tips about your business, including specials and other offerings. When people visit your business, they can also offer their own tips.

We’ll have to wait and see what Facebook does with location based offerings. We also have to keep in mind the problems that Facebook has had with privacy and how that will affect adoption of their location based offering.  Whatever shakes out, you and your business need to start thinking of ways to leverage location based social media to find new business and keep your current customers happy!

One comment on “Is It Hip to be Foursquare?

  1. Fiona Bosticky on said:

    I have to admit, I think Foursquare is an excellent social media concept. And I have been researching it, and testing it for myself. The opportunity to reward customers through Foursquare is huge, and shouldn’t be ignored by small businesses who have cafes, restaurants, or even attractions and entertainment places.

    It will be interesting to watch and see if the Foursquare user take up around the world continues…

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